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British Industrial History

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Jonathan Haigh

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Jonathan Haigh (1853-1906)

1907 Obituary [1]

JONATHAN HAIGH, born at Wakefield, Yorkshire, on the 21st February, 1853, received his engineering training in the works of Messrs. Edward Green and Sons, of that city, and afterwards served a term of pupilage to the late Mr. William Crutchley, civil engineer, architect and surveyor, of Wakefield, continuing as an assistant to Mr. Crutchley until January 1875.

He was subsequently employed as architectural assistant to the late Mr. William Dawes, of Manchester, and as managing assistant to Mr. Charles W. Richardson, architect and building surveyor, of Leeds and Wakefield, gaining practical experience in the design and erection of municipal and public buildings, the laying-out of building estates and the construction of new streets and drainage works.

In 1877 he became Assistant Engineer and Surveyor to the Aston Manor (Birmingham) Local Board, relinquishing that post in 1880 to take up the appointment of Engineer and Surveyor to the Abergavenny Board of Improvement Commissioners.

On the Board being constituted an Urban District Council and incorporated in 1899, Mr. Haigh was appointed the first Borough and Waterworks Engineer, and retained that office until his death on the 23rd July, 1906. During this period he carried out many important, improvements, comprising sewerage works, waterworks extensions. and reservoirs, public abattoirs, a fire station and highway depot, recreation grounds and pleasure gardens, an isolation hospital, a new cemetery, and town hall and market improvements, beside theconstruction of several miles of new streets, sewers and water mains.

Many of the foregoing works were carried out by Mr. Haigh without the intervention of a contractor, and in their execution he displayed great skill and resource. One of his latest undertakings was a scheme for providing a more efficient water-supply for the borough by means of an impounding reservoir and a system of redistribution. He was a Member of the Incorporated Association of Municipal and County Engineers.

Mr. Haigh was widely esteemed, alike for his professional ability and devotion to duty and for his sterling personal qualities: his death at the comparatively early age of 53 years was deeply regretted by all who knew him.

He was elected an Associate Member of The Institution on the 1st December, 1885.

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